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Jimmy O. Yang (Space Force, Crazy Rich Asians) will star in the series, and Taika Waititi has signed on to direct the first episode and executive produce. Yu is adapting his novel and will serve as showrunner on the show from 20th Television, Rideback, Participant and Dive.
In development since the fall of 2020, Interior Chinatown centers on Willis Wu (Yang), a background actor on a TV cop show called Black & White. Willis goes through the motions of his on-screen job, waiting tables and dreaming about a world beyond Chinatown. When he inadvertently becomes a witness to a crime, Willis begins to unravel a criminal web in Chinatown, and in the process discovers what it feels like to be in the spotlight while also unearthing his family’s buried history.
Yu’s novel, his second, won the National Book Award for fiction in 2020. His previous TV writing credits include HBO’s Westworld and Here and Now and FX’s Legion. The prolific Waititi, meanwhile, adds Interior Chinatown to a list of TV directing credits that also includes Our Flag Means Death, Reservation Dogs, What We Do in the Shadows and Apple TV+’s forthcoming Time Bandits.
Yu executive produces the series with Waititi; Rideback’s Dan Lin, Lindsey Liberatore and Elsie Choi; Participant’s Jeff Skoll and Miura Kite; and Dive’s Garrett Basch.
Yu is repped by UTA, The Book Group and Hansen Jacobson; Yang by Artists First, CAA and SRDA; Waititi by CAA, Manage-ment, ID and Yorn Levine; and Rideback by UTA and Myman Greenspan. UTA brokered the series sale to Hulu.
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